The Bridges of Central Park - Denesmouth Arch
When Frederick Law Olmsted (1822-1903) and Calvert Vaux (1824-1895) designed Central Park in 1858, they developed an innovative interwoven transportation system of pedestrian paths, bridle trails, and carriage drives. To accommodate all the park users, the designers had to create a compact system of bridges and arches that allowed separate levels of pathways. Vaux and his assistant Jacob Wrey Mould (1825-1886) created 35 uniquely ornamented bridges out of varying materials: brick, granite, marble, cast iron, rustic wood, and rusticated gneiss boulders fashioned from rock outcrops. Modification to the path system over the years has resulted in the creation of four additional arches and the destruction of three original ones.
Denesmouth Arch, so named because it links the Dene (the Scottish word for valley) and the Zoo, was built between 1859 and 1860. It is made entirely of pale olive New Brunswick sandstone. The arch originally sported four elegant bronze lampposts, but none survive today; the only extant ornaments are its quatrefoil circle carvings, representative of the Gothic Revival design that prevails throughout much of the park.
Directions to Central Park
Know Before You Go
There are currently 2 service interruptions affecting access within this park.
East 72nd St Playground
The East 72nd St Playground is closed for construction. It will reopen this summer. Central Park Conservancy is renovating the playground to improve its accessibility and connection to the park's landscape. Please visit the Central Park Conservancyfor more information.
As of April 27, Central Park's Bow Bridge is closed to the public for structural work and a fresh coat of paint. The work is expected to last three to four months. Removing the old paint will require wrapping the bridge in a tent-like structure to prevent debris from falling into the water. Along with repainting, the work will include replacing the wooden decking, fixing several beams on the underside of the span, and reinforcing approaches at either end.
Anticipated Completion: Summer 2015
Central Park Weather
- NYC Parks Celebrates A Decade Since Unveiling The Gates In Central Park, Looks Forward To Art In Parks In 2015
- This Weekend In Parks
- Tomorrow's World: The New York World's Fairs And Flushing Meadows Park On View At The Arsenal Gallery
- Run as One 4M Race
- Central Park Tour: Iconic Views of Central Park
- Central Park Tour: Southern Welcome Tour
- Central Park Tour: Belvedere's Kingdom
- Central Park Tour: Heart of the Park
- Baseball Fields
- Basketball Courts
- Bicycling and Greenways
- Dog-friendly Areas
- Fitness Equipment
- Great Trees
- Handball Courts
- Historic Houses
- Horseback Riding Trails
- Ice Skating Rinks
- Nature Centers
- Outdoor Pools
- Paddleboat Rentals
- Recreation Centers
- Soccer Fields
- Spray Showers
- Tennis Courts
- Volleyball Courts
- Wi-Fi Hot Spots
- Zoos and Aquariums
Know when to go:
View upcoming athletic area usage in